What Does My Tuition Cover?

Thank you for considering piano lessons with Dawn's Piano! There are so many cognitive & emotional benefits of music study, I am sure that it will be an enriching experience for your student. This article is here to help you know what you can expect from me in your piano study, and all the things that your tuition covers. I adapted much of this list from Wendy Stevens' brochure on the ComposeCreate website, please feel free to check that out if you want to hear about piano tuition from someone other than me.

Most of the time when we think about the tuition for piano lessons, we account for the time taken to give the lessons, maybe a little of the teacher's education or experience, and probably not too much else. So I just wanted to let you know where your tuition really goes, beyond the teacher's take home pay:
  • Time in lessons - this is the obvious one.
  • Lesson Prep - for every hour in lessons, I spend time doing prep work. Professional music journals have stated that for each hour of lesson time, you actually get 2 hours of the teacher's time.
  • Recital Cost - Venue rental, refreshments, program printing etc. Many piano studios charge a "Recital Fee" but I am not really a fan of a pay-to-play policy, so I've rolled this expense into my studio cost.
  • Business License, Insurance & Taxes - I run my studio as a business, I pay taxes, liability insurance and renew a business license every year. And as an Independent Music Teacher, there isn't a corporation to match funds when I buy health insurance, so the studio is actually what helps me purchase health insurance for my family.
  • Continuing Education - I am committed to bringing the best quality music education that I can. This means I am always learning too. I attend webinars, conferences, buy professional publications, and pay membership into professional groups with other music educators where I can continue to get great teaching ideas & inspiration that translates to quality lessons for you.
  • Studio Expenses - This is the catch-all category that includes the pianos, tuning, iPads & computers, printer, paper, ink, the music education apps & software we love to supplement lessons with, the equipment & software for online lessons, utilities, prizes or incentives, and all that good stuff that helps make your experience with my studio worthwhile.
  • Lesson Materials - The studio fee includes all lesson books & sheet music that you get to keep, so you pay one flat fee every month for lessons with no itemized additions. Those super-cool pieces from the radio or a movie? The studio buys the printing rights to that sheet music. Sometimes I am able to buy "Studio Licensed" music, which does cost more than single-user music, but I can print it over & over again without violating copyright laws.
  • Studio Subscriptions - The Piano Game Club & Piano Book Club are amazing monthly subscriptions I buy that send studio licensed music theory games & music books out every month. The studio also subscribes to Piano Explorer magazine & other resources to supplement your piano playing, because I am committed to giving my students a truly well-rounded music education. 
  • Young Composers Program - For the past several years, I have offered a Young Composers Program for students at an additional one-time fee. My new studio fees include this program so that ALL students will get the opportunity to compose a piece from concept to publishing & recording at no extra cost.
So that's the way the money goes! And there are likely still a few things I missed. If you ever have questions about the studio tuition or policies, please don't hesitate to ask.